Oncological Endocrinology

San Giovanni al Natisone, Italy

Oncological Endocrinology

San Giovanni al Natisone, Italy
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Catalano M.G.,University of Turin | Pugliese M.,University of Turin | Gargantini E.,University of Turin | Grange C.,University of Turin | And 9 more authors.
International Journal of Cancer | Year: 2012

Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC) has a rapidly fatal clinical course, being resistant to multimodal treatments. Microtubules, α/β tubulin heterodimers, are crucial in cell signaling, division and mitosis and are among the most successful targets for anticancer therapy. Panobinostat (LBH589) is a potent deacetylase inhibitor acting both on histones and nonhistonic proteins, including α-tubulin. In vitro LBH589, evaluated in three ATC cell lines (BHT-101, CAL-62 and 8305C), resulted in impairment of cell viability, inhibition of colony formation, cell cycle arrest and apoptosis induction. Mechanistically, we showed that LBH589 not only affected the expression of p21 and cyclin D1, but markedly determined microtubule stabilization as evidenced by tubulin acetylation and increased tubulin polymerization. In a SCID xenograft model implanted with CAL-62 cells, the cytotoxic properties of LBH589 were confirmed. The drug at the dose of 20 mg/kg significantly impaired tumor growth (final tumor volume 2.5-fold smaller than in untreated animals); at this dose, no relevant side effects were observed. In tumors of treated animals, a significant reduction of Ki67, which was negatively correlated with tubulin acetylation, was observed. Moreover, acetyl-tubulin levels negatively correlated with tumor volume at sacrifice, reinforcing the opinion that tubulin acetylation has a role in the inhibition of tumor growth. In conclusion, LBH589, acting on both histones and nonhistonic proteins in anaplastic thyroid cancer, appears to be a promising therapeutic agent for the treatment of this kind of cancer which is known not to respond to conventional therapy. Copyright © 2011 UICC.


Catalano M.G.,University of Turin | Poli R.,University of Turin | Pugliese M.,University of Turin | Fortunati N.,Oncological Endocrinology | Boccuzzi G.,University of Turin
Molecular Aspects of Medicine | Year: 2010

Advanced thyroid cancer refers to thyroid tumors which are resistant to conventional therapies and do not respond to radioiodine and comprises metastatic or recurrent differentiated cancers, poorly differentiated and anaplastic tumors. Progress in the knowledge of genetic/epigenetic alterations in thyroid cancer cells is rapidly offering several opportunities to develop new drugs directed to specific targets.Drugs currently proposed for molecular therapy include: (a) monoclonal antibodies; (b) kinase inhibitors; (c) anti-angiogenetic drugs; (d) proteasome inhibitors; (e) retinoic acid and PPAR-γ ligands; (f) radionuclide therapy; (g) epigenetic drugs (deacetylase inhibitors and demethylating agents). The results of several phase II trials using molecular drugs look promising. None of the treated patients, however, had a complete response, and only a minority of them had a partial response.The review will focus especially on epigenetic therapy, whose goal is to target the chromatin in rapidly dividing tumor cells and potentially restore normal cell functions. Deacetylases inhibitors modulate both epigenetic and multiple non-epigenetic mechanisms; they are, thus, viewed as a promising class of anticancer drugs. Experimental data show that deacetylase inhibitors are effective against advanced thyroid cancer.However, since multiple pathways need to be inhibited in order to substantially affect thyroid cancer growth, it is likely that a significant increase in the response rate to treatment of advanced thyroid cancer will be achieved through combinatorial drug therapies. Actually, many pre-clinical and clinical studies evaluate the combination of either two epigenetic drugs or a non-epigenetic chemotherapeutic and an epigenetic drug, in the effort to increase response rates. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.


Catalano M.G.,University of Turin | Fortunati N.,Oncological Endocrinology | Boccuzzi G.,University of Turin
Frontiers in Endocrinology | Year: 2012

At present no successful treatment is available for advanced thyroid cancer, which comprises poorly differentiated, anaplastic, and metastatic or recurrent differentiated thyroid cancer not responding to radioiodine. In the last few years, biologically targeted therapies for advanced thyroid carcinomas have been proposed on the basis of the recognition of key oncogenic mutations. Although the results of several phase II trials look promising, none of the patients treated had a complete response, and only a minority of them had a partial response, suggesting that the treatment is, at best, effective in stabilizing patients with progressive disease. "Epigenetic" refers to the study of heritable changes in gene expression that occur without any alteration in the primary DNA sequence. The epigenetic processes establish and maintain the global and local chromatin states that determine gene expression. Epigenetic abnormalities are present in almost all cancers and, together with genetic changes, drive tumor progression. Various genes involved in the control of cell proliferation and invasion (p16INK4A, RASSF1A, PTEN, Rap1GAP, TIMP3, DAPK, RARβ2, E-cadherin, and CITED1) as well as genes specific of thyroid differentiation (Na+/I- sym-port, TSH receptor, pendrin, SL5A8, and TTF-1) present aberrant methylation in thyroid cancer. This review deals with the most frequent epigenetic alterations in thyroid cancer and focuses on epigenetic therapy, whose goal is to target the chromatin in rapidly dividing tumor cells and potentially restore normal cell functions. Experimental data and clinical trials, especially using deacetylase inhibitors and demethylating agents, are discussed. © 2012. Catalano, Fortunati and Boccuzzi.


Marano F.,University of Turin | Argenziano M.,University of Turin | Frairia R.,University of Turin | Adamini A.,University of Turin | And 5 more authors.
Thyroid | Year: 2016

Background: No standard chemotherapy is available for anaplastic thyroid cancer (ATC). Drug-loaded nanobubbles (NBs) are a promising innovative anticancer drug formulation, and combining them with an externally applied trigger may further control drug release at the target region. Extracorporeal shock waves (ESWs) are acoustic waves widely used in urology and orthopedics, with no side effects. The aim of the present work was to combine ESWs and new doxorubicin-loaded glycol chitosan NBs in order to target doxorubicin and enhance its antitumor effect in ATC cell lines. Methods: CAL-62 and 8305C cells were treated with empty NBs, fluorescent NBs, free doxorubicin, and doxorubicin-loaded NBs in the presence or in the absence of ESWs. NB entrance was evaluated by fluorescence microscopy and flow cytofluorimetry. Cell viability was assessed by Trypan Blue exclusion and WST-1 proliferation assays. Doxorubicin intracellular content was measured by high-performance liquid chromatography. Results: Treatment with empty NBs and ESWs, even in combination, was safe, as cell viability and growth were not affected. Loading NBs with doxorubicin and combining them with ESWs generated the highest cytotoxic effect, resulting in drug GI50 reduction of about 40%. Mechanistically, ESWs triggered intracellular drug release from NBs, resulting in the highest nuclear drug content. Conclusions: Combined treatment with doxorubicin-loaded NBs and ESWs is a promising drug delivery tool for ATC treatment with the possibility of using lower doxorubicin doses and thus limiting its systemic side effects. © Copyright 2016, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2016.


Gallo M.,Oncological Endocrinology
Journal of Endocrinological Investigation | Year: 2013

Diabetic drugs have considerably enriched the therapeutic armamentarium for subjects with Type 2 diabetes. In the meantime, much interest has recently been focused on the potential cardiovascular and oncological adverse effects of these new therapies. As to glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) analogs, medullary thyroid tumors were reported to be more common in rodent toxicology studies with liraglutide, although the relevance of this finding in humans has been questioned. Analyses of sequential changes in calcitonin levels in several thousands of subjects did not reveal a relationship between liraglutide therapy and plasma calcitonin. Furthermore, no medullary thyroid cancer has been detected in humans taking liraglutide. Nevertheless, the long-term consequences of sustained GLP-1 receptor activation in the human thyroid remain unknown and deserve further investigation.


Fortunati N.,Oncological Endocrinology | Marano F.,University of Turin | Bandino A.,University of Turin | Frairia R.,University of Turin | And 2 more authors.
International Journal of Oncology | Year: 2014

Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is a very aggressive type of tumour and its aggressiveness is linked to E-cadherin downregulation. In estrogen-sensitive breast cancer, high levels of E-cadherin fit with high levels of ERα and MTA3 (a component of the transcription Mi-2/NuRD complex with intrinsic DAC activity). In TNBC the E-cadherin downregulation could be due to epigenetic silencing of the CDH1 gene as well as to the lack of a fully functioning ERα-activated pathway. We report that the pan-histone deacetylase inhibitor LBH589, a potent anti-proliferative agent, induced E-cadherin expression on cell membranes of MDA-MB-231 cells (TNBC), determining a reduction of cell invasion and migration. Even though E-cadherin expression in breast cancer is also regulated by estradiol and the ERα/MTA3/Snail/Slug pathway, LBH589 is able to increase E-cadherin without affecting the estrogen pathway. In fact, no expression of ERα, PR and FoxA1 was observed in MDA-MB-231 cells before and after LBH589 treatment; furthermore, the drug caused an increase in Snail and Slug expression with a concomitant reduction of MTA3 levels. Taking into consideration its anti-proliferative and anti-invasive properties, we suggest the use of LBH589 in aggressive breast cancer refractory to hormonal therapy.


Fortunati N.,Oncological Endocrinology | Bertino S.,University of Turin | Costantino L.,University of Turin | De Bortoli M.,University of Turin | And 5 more authors.
Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology | Year: 2010

Histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDIs) are valuable drugs in breast cancer where estrogen receptor α (ERα) can be silenced by epigenetic modifications. We report the effect of the clinically available HDI, valproic acid (VPA), on ERα expression and function in ER-negative breast cancer cells, MDA-MB-231. VPA induced ERα mRNA and protein, while did not modify ERβ. In VPA-treated cells, we also observed: (1) a correct transcriptional response to estradiol after transfection with the luciferase gene under the control of an estrogen-responsive minimal promoter (ERE-TKluc); (2) increased expression of the ER-related transcription factor FoxA1; (3) estradiol-induced up-regulation of several estrogen-regulated genes (e.g. pS2, progesterone receptor); (4) inhibitory effect of tamoxifen on cell growth. In conclusion, the HDI VPA, inducing ERα and FoxA1, confers to MDA-MB 231 cells an estrogen-sensitive "phenotype", restoring their sensitivity to antiestrogen therapy. © 2009 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.


PubMed | University of Turin and Oncological Endocrinology
Type: Journal Article | Journal: PloS one | Year: 2016

To target taxanes to castration-resistant prostate cancer cells, glycol-chitosan nanobubbles loaded with paclitaxel and docetaxel were constructed. The loaded nanobubbles were then combined with Extracorporeal Shock Waves, acoustic waves widely used in urology and orthopedics, with no side effects. Nanobubbles, with an average diameter of 353.3 15.5 nm, entered two different castration-resistant prostate cancer cells (PC3 and DU145) as demonstrated by flow cytometry and immunofluorescence. The shock waves applied increased the amount of intracellular nanobubbles. Loading nanobubbles with paclitaxel and docetaxel and combining them with shock waves generated the highest cytotoxic effects, resulting in a paclitaxel GI50 reduction of about 55% and in a docetaxel GI50 reduction of about 45% respectively. Combined treatment also affected cell migration. Paclitaxel-loaded nanobubbles and shock waves reduced cell migration by more than 85% with respect to paclitaxel alone; whereas docetaxel-loaded nanobubbles and shock waves reduced cell migration by more than 82% with respect to docetaxel alone. The present data suggest that nanobubbles can act as a stable taxane reservoir in castration-resistant prostate cancer cells and shock waves can further increase drug release from nanobubbles leading to higher cytotoxic and anti-migration effect.


PubMed | Diabetes Center, Ligurian Health Agency, Oncological Endocrinology, The Second University of Naples and Hospital Clinic Of Barcelona
Type: | Journal: Pharmacogenomics and personalized medicine | Year: 2014

Type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease with a complex and multifactorial pathophysiology. Patients with type 2 diabetes show a variety of clinical features, including different phenotypes of hyperglycemia (eg, fasting/preprandial or postprandial). Thus, the best treatment choice is sometimes difficult to make, and treatment initiation or optimization is postponed. This situation may explain why, despite the existing complex therapeutic armamentarium and guidelines for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, a significant proportion of patients do not have good metabolic control and at risk of developing the late complications of diabetes. The Italian Association of Medical Diabetologists has developed an innovative personalized algorithm for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, which is available online. According to the main features shown by the patient, six algorithms are proposed, according to glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c, 9% or 9%), body mass index (30 kg/m(2) or 30 kg/m(2)), occupational risk potentially related to hypoglycemia, chronic renal failure, and frail elderly status. Through self-monitoring of blood glucose, patients are phenotyped according to the occurrence of fasting/preprandial or postprandial hyperglycemia. In each of these six algorithms, the gradual choice of treatment is related to the identified phenotype. With one exception, these algorithms contain a stepwise approach for patients with type 2 diabetes who are metformin-intolerant. The glycemic targets (HbA1c, fasting/preprandial and postprandial glycemia) are also personalized. This accessible and easy to use algorithm may help physicians to choose a personalized treatment plan for each patient and to optimize it in a timely manner, thereby lessening clinical inertia.

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